Sex Offender Registration in Ohio Explained by Criminal Defense Attorney

Ohio Sex crimes Attorney Brian Joslyn explains sex offender registration in Ohio. Joslyn Law Firm is experienced in defending people accused of sex offenses in Ohio, including those who face the possible penalty of sex offender registration. If you have been accused of a crime or arrested in Ohio, please call (614) 444-1900 to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your case.

Sex offender registration in Ohio comes in 3 tiers, tier 1, tier 2, and tier 3. A tier 1 offense is the lowest of sex offender registration. And it comes with a mandatory 15 years of registration of in-person verification of where you reside every 1 year. And that registration requires that you’re not allowed to live within 1,000 feet of a school. This is a nonpredatory classification, meaning what you might have heard of postcards going out or community notification. Under a tier 1 sex offense, those notifications don’t go out. It merely requires that you notify the sheriff of where you live, yearly. One benefit to your charge being a tier 1 offense is that although it’s a 15-year mandatory registration, there is the possibility of being released early from that specific registration. At the tenth year, there’s certain requirements that can be met, that would allow you to potentially be released from your registration requirements 10 years into the 15-year registration. Move now to a tier 2 registration. A tier 2 registration has all the same registration requirements as a tier 1, except it increases it from 15 years to a 25-year period of registration. The only other difference in requirement is that the in-person verification is not every year, but every 180 days. Under a tier 2 registration, there is, currently, no way to get off early. So if you are classified as a tier 2 offender, you will have to register for the full 25-year period. Under current law, there is currently no way to shorten that. And then lastly, we have a tier 3 offense. These are considered a predatory classification. These are for the worst of worst offenses. And it is a lifetime registration and requires that you register with your local sheriff every 90 days. You are also not allowed to live within 1,000 feet of a school. And lastly if you’re going to be moving to different locations, there’s additional requirements as to notification of the incoming county that you might be wanting to move to or even reside at temporarily what classification you’re in depends on which charge that you’re pleading guilty to. Unfortunately under Ohio law, classifications cannot be negotiated, as a matter of law. So as an example, if you’re convicted of rape, as a felony of the first degree, the only classification that can be and must be imposed is a tier 3 registration. It is not something where I can negotiate with a prosecutor and see if they would agree not to impose it. It is not something where a judge can say “I do not think this person is a predator, and I don’t want to impose it” it is a function of law, and if you’re convicted of a felony 1, it will be imposed. Now obviously, the lower level your offense is, the lower your classification becomes. For all misdemeanor offenses, sexual offenses, it’s a tier 1. But as it relates to tier 1s and 2s in the felony categories, it depends on which sexual offense that you’re talking about.

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